Breadcrumbs navigation and Google search
Here is another refinement to Google search. Wonder how these guys at Google keep coming up with new stuff! Breadcrumbs navigation on web pages has been there for ages, at least as far as I can remember. If you guys recall it is the navigation trail which we can put on our web pages in addition to other navigation.
Look at the example: Basic Search Help is the landing page or the viewing page and the others are the navigation pages, what you may call the parent pages in the web hierarchy. Some of you must be thinking by now – so what? This stuff has been around since my toddler days. But the difference is this – Google has started using breadcrumbs in their search results. This is what Google has to say about this:
“The information in these new hierarchies come from analyzing destination web pages. For example, if you visit the ProductWiki Spidersapien page, you’ll see a series of similar links at the top, “Home> Toys & Games> Robots.” These are standard navigational tools used throughout the web called “breadcrumbs,” which webmasters frequently show on their sites to help users navigate. By analyzing site breadcrumbs, we’ve been able to improve the search snippet for a small percentage of search results, and we hope to expand in the future.”
The example shown in Google blog looks like this:
Okay fine. Now what? Lots I must say. Google is likely to use breadcrumbs in all their search results and it will be tied to search results. It is therefore advisable to put them in your own web sites. The problem is that we don’t really know what kind of algorithm will stitch up the entire thing. Under the circumstances, discretion is better part of valor.
There are other advantages in using breadcrumbs on your site. Some web masters have reported lesser bounce rate after implementing breadcrumbs. It also encourages visitors to browse through other pages in the hierarchy. It doesn’t hog much space, it is all text and looks pretty. If all this I not enough incentive, it will now onwards be a useful tool in SEO.
If there are any AdWords users reading this, they will immediately see the potential of breadcrumbs. Your ad, ad group, keywords and landing page can be nicely tied up with breadcrumbs.
Overall, this development needs to be watched carefully. I am sure that many skeletons will fall out of the web cupboard soon. Breadcrumbs have the potential to irreversibly change the search engine ecosystem. I for one am betting big on this and will be happy to help guys who want to join the breadcrumbs trail. Drop in a word and I will guide you through the process. Happy hunting.